Egyptian Tattoos – Designs, Symbols, Ideas & Meaning

Egyptian eye of the horus tattoo

Eye of the horus tattoo

Egyptian tattoos seem to be drawing a bit of attention lately, although all things Egyptian have always been a popular art design.  Jewelry, paintings, furniture, architecture, clothing are and have remained popular for thousands of years.  It’s no wonder when you read some of the Egyptian tattoo requests below and their definitions and meanings.

Various Types of Egyptian Tattoos

Anubis Egyptian Tattoos – Anubis Egyptian Tattoos can be designed and illustrated several ways.  He is an Egyptian God and is considered to be half human and half jackal.  He can be standing or sitting. His upper half is jackal and lower half human; but when sitting he is a dog like position. There are hieroglyphics that translate to his name.

Egyptian Cat Tattoos – The Egyptian Goddess Bastet is the daughter of Ra and Isis.  Her history is quite interesting.  Originally depicted as a fierce protector, she eventually became softened and is recognized as the Goddess of cats, sun and moon.  She is illustrated holding and ankh in one hand and a rattle in the other. Standing; Bastet is half cat on the upper body and human on the lower body.  She is also known for protection.

Egyptian Hieroglyphic Tattoos and Egyptian Writing Tattoos – Egyptian Hieroglyphic Tattoos are actually very cool.  This is the name in Hieroglyphics for Bastet.  Search out hieroglyphics on Wikipedia for full use and description to help design Egyptian hieroglyphic tattoos.

Egyptian Cartouche Tattoos – Egyptian Cartouche Tattoos are probably in high demand because of the popularity of the jewelry being created in this design.  Cartouches are an elongated oval that holds the name of the wearer in hieroglyphics.  Hieroglyphic translators are available online so that you can translate your name.  It is names that are used in the Cartouche for ancient Egyptians believed that by inscribing your name on a cartouche, you would never “disappear”.  They are most often seen vertical but horizontal is also acceptable for longer names.

Egyptian Lotus Tattoos – Egyptian Lotus tattoos would probably either represent the blue or white lotus of the Nile.  Why these two?  They were associated with birth and death; each of these flowers open and close; rising and falling into the Nile either night or day. The white flower emerges at night and the blue during the day. Be sure to search out images as these lotuses are not related to any other lotus around the world.

Egyptian Eye of Horus Tattoos– Egyptian Eye of Horus tattoos could have two possible meanings. One is literally the eye of the ancient Egyptian

Eye of Horus

Eye of Horus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

God Horus depicted in this paragraph.  The other possibility is the video game “Eye of Horus”.   In the video game the eye itself is not illustrated on the cover, so request for Egyptian Eye of Horus will look like the Hieroglyph above.  This eye has come to represent many different definitions in modern times.  It’s best to research and decide for yourself which meaning you want to represent with the Egyptian Eye of Horus tattoos and then maybe add to you tattoo design to clarify your particular belief.

Egyptian Gods Tattoos – Egyptian Gods Tattoos are numerous.  Wikipedia has 79 pages of Egyptian Gods. All differ in appearance.  An example is Osiris who is king of the dead. He is also considered king of the living because the Egyptians believed that the dead were also living.  He is depicted with green skin, partially wrapped as a mummy in traditional Egyptian clothing of the period.  It’s best to read through the 79 Egyptian Gods known about and decide which one best illustrates what you desire in Egyptian Gods Tattoos.

Egyptian Pyramid TattoosEgyptian pyramid tattoos of course would illustrate a pyramid.  While most people believe the pyramids were burial tombs others believe that the shafts created to view certain point of the sky were used to send off the deceased to the heavens.   The possibility for Egyptian pyramid tattoos is endless.  Interestingly the pyramid is used on American paper money with what may be the Eye of Horus.  This is a popular tattoo design; adding the eye of Horus either in the pyramid shape or on the top of the pyramid.  Interpretation and meaning is really left up to the body art wearer in this instance because of the multiple meanings of the Eye of Horus and the pyramids.

Egyptian Cross Tattoo and Egyptian Ankh Tattoos– Egyptian cross tattoos and Egyptian Ankh tattoos are actually the same thing; just requested in

Ankh symbols

Ankh symbols (Photo credit: radiowood2000)

different terms.  The Ankh looks like this:   This symbol is the most used symbol of all Egyptian Art.  Its meaning is not exactly known although many scholars have guessed.  What we do know is that it represents life.  In the modern world it is worn to show respect for the ancient wisdom of the Egyptian culture among other reasons.  Almost every Egyptian God or Goddess is illustrated holding an Ankh in one of their hands.

Egyptian Phoenix Tattoos – The Egyptian Phoenix tattoos would look something like this illustration or some variance of it.  The Benu bird was thought to be a stork like or heron that had a 500 year life span.  It rebirthed in the normal way of other phoenix birds around the globe.  What is different about this particular phoenix is that early Christians adopted it to represent Christ and the rebirth of Christ.  The Ancient Egyptians however associated a visit by this bird to represent the sun and marked its visit to keep time.

Egyptian Animal Tattoos – Egyptian animal tattoos would most likely illustrate the lion, cat, jackal, and birds.  All of these animals held significant meaning to the Egyptians.  Look at some gallery images for ideas on the use of Egyptian animal tattoos in your body art.

Coloring & Placement of Egyptian Tattoos

Coloring for Egyptian tattoos when used rather than the black shading technique are often in gold, copper, reds, blues and black.  Most of the metal art created by Egyptians was in copper or gold.

Placement of Egyptian tattoos is usually on the chest, back or shoulder.  The use of themed tattoos in these designs is very popular.  For smaller tattoos, say a single Ankh, the foot, ankle, wrist, neck, shoulder blade, all make very nice placement area.


Egyptian Tattoo Photos

egyptian tattoo on the neck

eye of the horus tattoo

horus eye tattoo

anubis tattoo egyptian

imprinting on egyptian mythos

 Horus eye tattoo

rose and Horus Tattoo


Egyptian Symbols & Inspiration

Eye of Horus Linocut Print (9/4/08)Stained Glass Panel, Eye-CatcherGod of the DeadBijou de la tombe de Toutânkhamon (musée du Caire / Egypte)

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